iTunes 12 unveils radical new redesign, promises simpler playlist editing


To coincide with the release of OS X 10.10 Yosemite, Apple has unveiled iTunes 12.0.1, the first major release of its media manager and player for almost two years.

The new release debuts a flatter, more modern look designed to tie in with Yosemite, which includes a new red app icon and some redesigned and restructured elements. The update also adds support for some iOS 8/Yosemite-only features such as Family Sharing.

Once installed, the changes to the user interface are immediately apparent. Aside from the flatter, more modern look, iTunes 12 also debuts a restructured look that sees users navigate between libraries, shared folders and devices by way of icons displayed horizontally at the top of the screen.

The left-hand sidebar view has been depreciated so it only appears when Playlists have been selected or an iPod, iPhone or iPad is being browsed.

Music (and Music Videos), TV Shows and Movies get their own distinct library sections, while a … button provides access to other sections, including Podcasts, Books (including Audio Books) and iTunes U.

The redesign also sees a new "Recently Added" section to the top of each library while a convenient iTunes Store tab has been added to each view directing users to the relevant section of the iTunes Store for more content.

Playlist editing has been made easier by placing playlists side-by-side with users music libraries, making it simple to add tracks to existing playlists by dragging and dropping them on to the playlist in question. The Get Info box for a selected item has also been radically redesigned and simplified.

Those running OS X Yosemite will also find that iTunes supports Family Sharing, which allows users to share photos, location data, music, apps and movies between family members on Yosemite and iOS 8 devices. Finally, support for OS X Snow Leopard has been dropped with this release.

iTunes 12.0.1 and iTunes 12.0.1 (Windows 64-bit) are both available now for free download for Mac (OS X 10.7.5 or later) and Windows (XP or later).

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